SURVIVING THE FIRST TRIMESTER
Some women find it tough right from the month they miss their periods, up until several days after delivery of the baby. The worst part is the first 3 months; characterized by malaise, nausea, vomiting and mood changes (aka morning sickness). Here are some tips that can help to ameliorate the symptoms…
*Understand the physiology. Knowing the reason for, or wisdom behind that feeling can help you adopt a more positive perspective. As soon as the foetus begins to develop, the placenta produces a hormone (BHCG), which let’s your body “recognize” the baby as part of you and not an alien. BHCG is responsible for all the morning sickness and it peaks around the third month, when the foetus is now fully established. The symptoms should reduce or disappear after this time. This is the little price you have to pay to avoid a miscarriage.
*Avoid the triggers. Besides blaming it on BHCG, you still have to study yourself and your environment in order to identify the triggers/exacerbating factors. Whatever it is: food, drinks, spices, fumes, scents etc. – just avoid it as much as you can. If it’s warm water, try cold (and vice versa). If it’s cooked food, try fresh or dry fruits and vegetables. Eat bland snacks like crackers and oatmeal instead of oily pastries. Squeeze some lemon into your drinking water. Avoid sugary and fizzy drinks.
*Be active. It looks easier to just lie on the bed all day; but this doesn’t help the situation at all. Keep yourself busy. Push yourself out of that bed. Pray. Meditate. Take a shower. Do simple exercise. Go to work/school. Read a book. Socialize. Have some fun but, of course, get enough rest too.
*Home remedies. There are herbs and seeds that can help you feel better. I’m not a herbalist but I know one scientifically proven example: ginger. You can get it from stores and pharmacies: fresh, in form of powder, candy, and even tablets.
*Prescription drugs. As a last resort, your doctor can prescribe antiemetic medications for you. You can get injections too, if you can’t tolerate orally. These drugs should not be taken over the counter, as they are not without adverse effects.
*If the vomiting is persistent, and nothing seems to be working, hospitalization and aggressive treatment would be necessary. It may even be due to something else, other than the normal pregnancy. At the end of the day, only a healthy mother can carry a healthy baby to term.